Investors grab Dewhurst stores

OVER HALF of the remaining 95 Dewhurst shops taken into administration after the chain's collapse have been snapped up.According to restructuring ?rm and administrator BDO Stoy Hayward LLP.

OVER HALF of the remaining 95 Dewhurst shops taken into administration after the chain's collapse have been snapped up. According to restructuring ?rm and administrator BDO Stoy Hayward LLP.

Lloyd Maunder - until now only a 'white knight' investor in Dewhurst - will take shops in Cambourne, Newquay, Liskeard, Plymouth, Bovey Tracey, Paignton, Exeter and Ilfracombe. These stores will join the outlets already acquired by Lloyd Maunder in Kingsbridge, Brixham, Torquay, Teigmouth, Dawlish, Exmouth and Tiverton.

Of the eight new additions to Lloyd Maunder's portfolio, five have already been refurbished and rebranded by the investor. The administrator said that over the past three weeks, offers had been made and accepted by individual parties, but that Lloyd Maunder was the only buyer of multiple stores.

The company bought control of the Dewhurst chain from its private equity owners in 2005. Lloyd Maunder's Neil MacDonald said: "The three shops in Exeter, Plymouth and Liskeard are to be refurbished as quickly as possible, to provide us with a well-equipped group of 15 modern butcher shops." Once the sales of the stores have been completed, the Dewhurst name will no longer trade, as all contracts exclude the right for it to be used.

Shay Bannon, one of the joint administrations from BDO Stoy Hayward LLP, said: "Over the next few weeks, we will be looking to complete on other sales also, and we are continuing to generate offers for the remaining stores." He added: "We are very pleased that most of the stores have received high levels of interest, and subsequent offers, which has secured hundreds of butchers jobs across the country."

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